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Hummingbird Bread

Moist, cinnamon banana bread studded with chopped pecans and pineapple pieces, this Hummingbird Bread is a spin on the classic Southern cake recipe!

sliced hummingbird bread with icing, text overlay

Southern Hummingbird Bread

When I first moved to Texas, mom and I used to go to a local restaurant called The Picket Fence. It was known for its home cooking…and it’s dessert tray!!

This was the first place I tried Hummingbird Cake…I saw it on that dessert tray and just had to give it a taste! It was a moist layer cake, with cream cheese frosting, and lots of goodies baked inside. And it was amazing!!

Hummingbird bread is a loaf-style version of the classic hummingbird cake. It has all the same flavors and ingredients, but is baked in a loaf pan so it is especially easy to cut and serve.

If you’ve never tried hummingbird cake before, just imagine a carrot cake…with even more yummy mix-ins baked into it! You start with a moist banana bread batter that’s spiced with a hint of cinnamon and then you stir in chopped pecans, coconut, and pineapple chunks. It’s banana bread taken to the next level!!

If you’ve never tried hummingbird cake before, just imagine a carrot cake…with even more yummy mix-ins baked into it! Usually it is a layer cake, but we made a loaf cake so it is incredibly easy! Just mix, bake, and frost!

loaf of banana bread with cream cheese icing and pecans

Why is it Called Hummingbird Cake?

The original hummingbird cake recipe originated in Jamaica, and was not called Hummingbird cake at all to start! Interestingly, the first known name for this recipe was “Doctor Bird Cake” in honor of the national bird, the scissor-tail hummingbird. Legend has it that the long beak probed like a doctor would their patient, hence the name. But by any name, this cake is a tropical flavored treat!

Related: Try our homemade zucchini bread recipe too!

sliced hummingbird bread with frosting and pecans on top

Ingredients

For your convenience in re-creating this recipe at home, we’ve included shop-able ad links to some of the products and supplies used. Read our disclosure policy here.

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 ½ cups bananas, mashed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 oz crushed pineapple
  • 1 cup coconut
  • ⅓ cup pecans, chopped

For the Frosting

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ cup pecans, chopped, for garnish

hummingbird bread ingredients on marble counter, with text labels

Kitchen Tools Used

Instructions

To Prep: Preheat oven to 350 degrees and coat two loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray.

  1. Whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large mixing bowl. In a separate large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream the butter and sugars. Mix in the eggs and vanilla extract.
  2. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients, mixing until well combined. The batter will still be kind of crumbly at this point.
  3. Fold in pineapple, coconut, pecans, and mashed banana.
  4. Pour batter into prepared pans and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of each loaf comes out clean.

4 step photo collage showing how to make hummingbird bread

To Make the Cream Cheese Frosting

Beat together all frosting ingredients (except pecans) until smooth and fluffy.

When bread has completely cooled, spread frosting generously to coat. Sprinkle with chopped pecans.

mixing cinnamon cream cheese icing with egg beaters

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Cream Cheese Icing Need to be Refrigerated?

Yes, desserts made with cream cheese frosting should always be kept in the refrigerator. You can simply cover the loaf pan with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and store in the fridge for 3-4 days.

Another option is to bake the bread and keep it covered at room temperature, then frost it when you’re ready to serve. Bread tends to dry out more quickly in the fridge.

Can You Freeze Hummingbird Bread?

Yes, this bread can be frozen. Simply wrap the whole loaf (after it is cooled) in parchment paper and place into a large freezer bag. It will stay good in the freezer for up to 3 months. You can also freeze individual slices using the same method. I recommend waiting to frost until after you thaw.

loaf of iced hummingbird bread, sliced

 

Printable Copy of Our Hummingbird Bread Recipe

If you tried this recipe and liked it, please rate it!

sliced hummingbird bread with icing, text overlay

Hummingbird Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting

Stacey
Moist, cinnamon banana bread studded with chopped pecans and pineapple pieces, this Hummingbird Bread is a spin on the classic Southern cake recipe!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 528 kcal

Equipment

  • Stand Mixer or Electric Hand Mixer
  • Mixing bowls
  • Loaf Pans
  • Wire cooling rack

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup unsalted butter softened
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 ½ cups bananas mashed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 oz crushed pineapple
  • 1 cup coconut
  • cup pecans chopped

For the Frosting

  • ½ cup unsalted butter softened
  • 8 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ cup pecans chopped, for garnish

Instructions
 

nstructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and coat two loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  • In a separate large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream the butter and sugars. Mix in the eggs and vanilla extract.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients, mixing until well combined. The batter will still be kind of crumbly at this point.
  • Stir in pineapple, coconut, pecans, and mashed banana.
  • Scoop batter into prepared pans and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of each loaf comes out clean.

To Make the Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Beat together all frosting ingredients (except pecans) until smooth and fluffy.
    mixing cinnamon cream cheese icing with egg beaters
  • When bread has completely cooled, spread frosting generously to coat. Sprinkle with chopped pecans.

Notes

Nutrition information is provided as an estimate only; your actual values will vary based on exact ingredients used and serving size.

Nutrition

Calories: 528kcalCarbohydrates: 58gProtein: 6gFat: 32gSaturated Fat: 16gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 87mgSodium: 361mgPotassium: 227mgFiber: 3gSugar: 33gVitamin A: 794IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 50mgIron: 2mg
Keyword bread
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2 photo collage of hummingbird bread loaf with icing

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